Home Global Village Will Outdoor Air-Conditioning Be Effective To Tackle Qatar’s Extreme Heat

Will Outdoor Air-Conditioning Be Effective To Tackle Qatar’s Extreme Heat

Qatari authorities are taking all possible measures to counter the extreme weather conditions. In the latest move, outdoor air-conditioning has been ensured. Will it be effective? Many people criticize the decision as it is expected to emit more heat by burning fuel.

Qatar

The challenge of climate change is vividly coming out and the world is not prepared to counter it. In the latest development, the State of Qatar is experiencing an unprecedented rise in temperature which is causing serious problems for both natives and foreigners. Qatari authorities are taking all possible measures to protect everyone from heat.

In this regard, it has installed giant coolers alongside pavements and in outdoor shopping malls so the temperatures are bearable for people going about their everyday lives. Last year the tiny Gulf state began using air-conditioning in its football stadiums to keep fans and players cool.

According to details, temperatures in summer now reach a sweltering 115°F (46°C) in Qatar, where the 2022 World Cup has already been moved to winter to avoid the searing heat. The FIFA Club World Cup is an international men’s association football competition organized by the Federation International de Football Association (FIFA), the sport’s global governing body. It attracts people from across the world to watch the tournament which helps the host country to present its soft image before the world.

Interestingly, in Doha, the country’s capital, the Public Works Authority has painted the Abdullah Bin Jassim Street near one the city’s biggest souq markets the colour blue to reduce the temperature of the asphalt by 59-68°F degrees.

The air conditioning in Qatar works by pumping cold air onto the pavement through cooling nozzles after chilled water is brought to the street via a pipeline.

The blue roads help to lower the temperature because dark-coloured roads absorb the heat from the sun more than lighter ones, which reflect it. The 18-month-long experiment is on a 650-foot (250m) stretch of road and uses a 0.003ins (1mm) thick blue coating with a special heat-reflecting pigment. It also contains hollow ceramic microspheres which are designed to reflect infrared radiation.

Engineer Saad Al-Dosari said: ‘The temperatures of dark asphalt is 20 degrees Celsius higher than the actual temperature because black attracts and radiates heat’. Other cities around the world have also been conducting similar experiments to deal with extreme heat. This summer, Los Angeles painted its streets in a greyish-white coating which can be 23°F cooler than the black surface.

Read more: Was Organizing Women Marathon in Qatar’s Hot Weather a Bad Idea?

The air conditioning in Qatar works by pumping cold air onto the pavement through cooling nozzles after chilled water is brought to the street via a pipeline. Qatar is especially vulnerable to extreme heat because the country is a peninsula – a piece of land which sticks out into the water – on the Persian Gulf.

In the Gulf, the average surface temperatures of the water are around 90.3°F (32.4°C). With virtually no clouds or rain in summer, the rising sea temperatures lead to more atmospheric humidity.

Jos Lelieveld, an atmospheric chemist at the Max Planck Institute in Germany, said: ‘these areas are warming faster than the rest of the globe, and in certain cities on top of that you have an urban heat island effect and urban pollution.’

Experts blame say global warming is to blame for the hot spells and that record-breaking temperatures are becoming increasingly common.

In a bid to help everyone to stay cool, city planners have built walkways and streets pointing north to take advantage of breezes that come from that direction.

Talking about the blue road Hossam Almeer, a 30-year-old data scientist working for Qatar Computing Research Institute (QCRI), said: ‘I think it’s great that the government is open-minded about using technological innovation to deal with the challenges of living in the desert.

Experts blame say global warming is to blame for the hot spells and that record-breaking temperatures are becoming increasingly common.

Read more: Summer in Qatar program continues to amaze tourists and locals

Abdulla al-Mannai, director of the Qatar Meteorology Department, argued in emails to The Washington Post that the fast warming of Doha is being driven largely by urbanization, or what is known as the urban heat island effect, in which the dark surfaces of city streets and rooftops absorb solar radiation.

Mannai provided data showing that temperatures in the city of Doha have climbed by an astonishing 2.8 degrees Celsius (5.1 degrees Fahrenheit) since 1962. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA give lower figures, but ones that still reflect major warming of 1.9 degrees Celsius (3.4 degrees Fahrenheit) in just over 50 years.

And that is after an adjustment that is designed to take urbanization into account. It is yet to be seen whether Qatar will be able to counter the heat and provide the players and their supporters with a conducive environment during the World Cup 2022.

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